KURT BUSCH, NO. 1 MONSTER ENERGY CAMARO ZL1 – Qualified 3rd DID YOU GET EVERYTHING YOU COULD OUT OF YOUR RACE CAR? “I don’t know. I’m happy that we got third, but I’m disappointed because I’m like where was the lap time? Where did I lose it? But, thanks to the guys and the engineering group to take our car from where we were in practice and to give us a shot at the pole. That’s that team chemistry and that feel that we’re getting for one another. I don’t know. I’m going to call that one all-driver. It’s so tight for the top four guys. That’s what this Monster Energy Cup is all about. You’ve got to be perfect and we were off just a bit there I guess.”
“We were a little off to start with. We were trying something, and it didn’t quite work out the way we wanted it to, but I feel like we can get it right before qualifying. We can make a little change here and make a good, solid qualifying run and we will go out there and race them.”
“It was kind of a struggle this morning, but actually there it felt pretty good. Definitely a lot better than what we had in practice. I missed it a little bit on the lap. It had some more in it. Just didn’t hit it right. The Stanley Camry felt good there, so I think that was the first time all day I’ve had a good feel in the car and if we can kind of transfer that into tomorrow, that’d be a positive.”
“I don’t know that I’ve ever necessarily looked at a pre-Brexton era and a post. There’s something else that kind of happened around that same timeframe and that was Adam Stevens (crew chief). I think just having the opportunities to work with him and to have the communications that we had from the Xfinity side that transferred to the Cup side since 2015. Since having Brexton there’s been some good success as well too – the championship in 2015 and certainly would have liked to have won a couple more. We’ve been in the Championship 4 four years in a row, but can’t seem to close out the deal when it matters most in the final race, the only race that counts. We’ve just got to keep fighting for that and try to get better and making sure that we’re ready to go when it comes down to that time.”
COLE CUSTER, No. 00 Haas Automation Ford Mustang – HOW DO YOU PREPARE FOR THE HEAT THAT IS EXPECTED THIS WEEKEND? “You really just try to hydrate as much as you can and also you eat good on race day. You don’t want anything bad in your system and also have as many electrolytes as you can. We usually all have something that we use to try and get some electrolytes in us, so that’s pretty big.”
This weekend Corey LaJoie will make his 12th visit to Loudon, New Hampshire as a NASCAR driver, and his fifth as a driver in the Monster Energy Cup Series.
Richard Childress Racing at New Hampshire Motor Speedway ... Richard Childress has four victories as a team owner at New Hampshire Motor Speedway with Robby Gordon (2001), Kevin Harvick (2006) and Clint Bowyer (2007 and 2010). In 126 starts at the 1.058-mile oval, Childress also has two pole awards, 16 top-five and 41 top-10 finishes.
The past and present of the Wood Brothers and their Motorcraft/Quick Lane team come together this week as they’re preparing the No. 21 Motorcraft/Quick Lane Ford Mustang that Paul Menard will race at New Hampshire Motor Speedway, while also unveiling their Southern 500 car, which is inspired by the 1957 Ford Sunliner raced by the team’s late founder Glenn Wood.
Kurt Busch’s victory at Kentucky Speedway was the third in a row for Chevrolet in the Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series, following Justin Haley at Daytona and Alex Bowman at Chicagoland. Team Chevy last accomplished the feat in 2015 on three separate occasions. Most recently, it occurred in the November races at Martinsville (Jeff Gordon winner), Texas (Jimmie Johnson) and Phoenix (Dale Earnhardt Jr.).
Bowman on the playoffs: “With seven races to go in the regular season, we are really focused on the points. Getting the win in Chicagoland locked us into the playoffs, which was what we have been looking to do all season. Now, we are looking at getting the most amount of points that we can during a race to get ourselves in a good position when we head to Las Vegas in September.”